Love ’em or hate ’em, if you’re reading a recipe for Roasted Blue Cheese Balsamic Brussels Sprouts I’m going out on a limb here to state you’re a Brussels sprouts lover, or at best you’re on the fence & want a good recipe to coax you over to the side of the lovers. Come, come, don’t be afraid, it’s only a vegetable, not a monster as some of you overly dramatic, picky eaters seem to perceive it.
For those who turn their noses up at Brussels sprouts, chances are your dislike of them comes from their smell & strong flavor when they’re cooked for too long. Cooked perfectly, their flavor & subsequent aroma is very different from when grandmothers the world over used to cook the ever living shit out of them.
These cabbage lookalikes contain a compound containing sulfur, hence the strong, somewhat unpleasant smell when they’re cooked past their optimal doneness. Roast them in a hot oven for 10 minutes & the sprouts will be retain just the right about of crunch with a nutty flavor just as nature intended – & much more enjoyable.
Those of us who love Brussels sprouts tend to know how to cook them – for a short period of time with a gusto of heat before their sulfur-like compounds have had a chance to stink up the house, something I’m sure we all experienced during our childhood.
Because the sprouts are so flavorful, they’re able to compete with equally robust flavors of blue cheese & balsamic vinegar. And although balsamic tends to caramelize when roasted with veggies or meat, I like to add a little drizzle of honey (or maple syrup) to aid in that caramelization. My husband & I will share a pound of sprouts between us. The man loathes chocolate but loves Brussels Sprouts. Go figure.
Brussels sprouts are in season during the cooler months in the northern hemisphere, so enjoy them now. They’re perfect served with roasted carrots & chicken or pork. Not just relegated to a side dish any more, they’re also good in pasta & a stir-fry. I go through phases & currently I’m in the Roasted Blue Cheese Balsamic Brussels Sprouts phase. What’s your favorite way to enjoy them?
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- 1 lb (453g) Brussels sprouts, trimmed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- a good pinch of salt & pepper
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 4 oz (213g) creamy blue cheese, broken into pieces (I used Gorgonzola)
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 400F (200C).
- Halve sprouts, leaving any small ones whole. Toss Brussels sprouts, oil, vinegar, salt & pepper together on the baking sheet. Roast for 8 minutes. Drizzle with honey & scatter with blue cheese. Cook for 2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serves 4.